Tech

Company subsidiary founded: VW wants to drive autonomously in five years

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The Volkswagen Group wants to develop self-driving cars at three locations worldwide. For this purpose, subsidiaries are to be founded in Germany, in Silicon Valley and in China, the company said on Monday in Wolfsburg, First applications for self-propelled systems (Level 4) were "Mobility solutions for people and goods in urban areas" like autonomous taxis and vans. About the middle of the coming decade wanted VW "Begin the Commercialization of Autonomous Driving on a Large Scale",

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  1. The Bavarian police, different locations
  2. EDAG BFFT Electronics, Ingolstadt



Volkswagen Autonomy GmbH (VWAT) is to be based in Wolfsburg and Munich. The location in the Bavarian state capital was chosen because of the fact that the group company Autonomous Intelligent Driving GmbH (AID) is already based there. In addition, Munich will become the European headquarters of Argo AI. VW announced in July 2019 to invest $ 2.6 billion in the startup. The number of employees in Munich is to be increased by 40 percent to 700.

200 employees worldwide

The company subsidiary VWAT, however, should have significantly fewer employees. "In perspective, around 200 employees are expected to work in the company, more than half of them will be in Munich and Wolfsburg."Company spokesman Marc Langendorf said on request from Golem.de. VWAT should be "focus strongly on systems engineering and industrialization"while Argo AI is developing the actual control software.

Head of the new company subsidiary is to be Alexander Hitzinger, currently Senior Vice President for Autonomous Driving of the Volkswagen Group and Board Member for Technical Development at Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles (VWN). According to Hitzinger, Volkswagen wants "Leverage synergies across all Group brands to reduce the cost of self-driving vehicles, high-performance computers and sensors", The goal is, in perspective, a self-propelled system "to establish as a standard module for all Group brands",

The US subsidiary in Silicon Valley is to be founded next year. The Chinese offshoot is scheduled to follow in 2021. The Silicon Valley was because of the proximity to Argo AI and as a world leader "Talent pool for autonomous driving" has been chosen. A development center in China is necessary, "to meet local legal requirements",

The VW brand for light commercial vehicles should be the first user of such a system. It remains unclear what impact the founding company has for Group brands such as Audi. There, among other things, a so-called stowage pilot was developed, for which, however, there are still no admission criteria.

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